Music production is a fascinating creative process that can also be pretty complicated—making your music stand out and capturing people’s attention demands using unique and memorable sounds.
That’s why it’s critical to figure out how to get the right sounds to use.
However, if you’re new to music production, it can be a daunting task.
Because where do music producers get sounds?
That’s where we come in; we’ll show you what sources experts rely on to get their sounds.
Read on to learn more!
Where Do Music Producers Get Sounds?
Music producers rely on many sources to obtain sounds for their productions, from field recordings to digital libraries.
Depending on your skillset and genre, you may find some sources easier to rely on than others.
We’ll list the most common sources and explain them adequately to save you the headache.
1. Recording Live Instruments or Sounds
The most obvious way to get a sound is to capture it yourself.
Recording live instruments or sounds is the most fun part of music production, as it opens many possibilities and allows you to add a unique touch to your tracks.
We’re talking about recording guitar, piano, bass, or even foley – creating sounds for production using everyday objects and props!
Of course, you’ll need to invest in equipment to record sounds effectively.
You’ll also need to be tech-savvy and good with your instrument.
All you need is a:
- Microphone: To capture the sound of your instrument or source.
- Audio Interface: To convert the analog sound into a digital signal that can be recorded on your computer. Sometimes, your hardware will come with built-in audio interfaces, such as some models of Marshall amplifiers.
- Computer: To run your software and store your sounds.
- Recording Software: To capture, edit, and process your recordings.
Higher-end equipment will allow you to record sharper and higher-quality sounds, so consider upgrading your hardware later if you’ve started with the basics.
2. Sampling from Existing Recordings
This technique is common in hip-hop, electronic music, and R&B.
Sampling is taking a snippet of another song or recording and incorporating it into your production.
It can be anything from vocals or basslines to single sounds. You can also alter it in a way that fits your composition.
However, the problem with sampling is that you’ll face copyright issues if you don’t do it correctly.
You’ll have to obtain the proper permissions since you’ll be using someone else’s work.
Once you have a song and you’re given the clear, you can use any audio software to alter it, from the beginner-friendly Audacity to professional DAWs, which we’ll explain below.
3. Using Digital Audio Workstations
A DAW is digital software that allows you to record, edit, and produce music. You can layer several sounds, add effects, and make adjustments to get the exact track you want.
Most beats you hear in modern tracks are made possible by DAWs.
They’re highly accessible, easy to learn and offer everything you need.
You don’t need to spend extra setting up a specialized studio since a DAW is a virtual studio in itself – you’ll make all your music on your computer.
4. Using Synthesizers
Synthesizers are electronic musical instruments featuring a keyboard that can create different sounds using oscillators, filters, and envelope generators.
And, with the use of knobs and buttons, you can tweak and shape the generated sounds to your liking.
Synthesizers are popular in genres like hip-hop, electronic dance music (EDM), and synth wave.
Synthesizers connect to your computer via MIDI or USB cables and can be used with a DAW to make use of the sounds you create.
5. Turning to Sound Libraries
Sound libraries are an excellent resource for music producers.
They provide many sounds for use in music productions.
Individuals or companies create these collections of sounds that can include anything from classic instruments to ambient sounds.
Most individuals prefer to sell these sounds, but you can acquire them for free sometimes.
The cool thing about these libraries is that they save you the trouble of creating sounds yourself.
They’re also practical and specific, as you can generally find any sound you want in them.
Buying a library is often the better option, as the sounds are often higher in quality and optimized for use in music.
If you’re getting sounds for free, you’ll probably need to edit them to fit in your production.
Also, you’ll need to ensure that the sounds are royalty-free if you want to commercialize your project.
Reliable Sound Libraries:
6. Collaborating With Designers
Sometimes, you need a unique or specific sound that you can’t find online or produce yourself.
You can work with a sound designer who can bring your vision to life.
You’ll simply give them the details and a sample, and they’ll work their magic to create the perfect sound for you.
You can hire sound designers on freelancing websites such as Fiverr or UpWork.
Since you’re going to deal with a person, proper communication and cooperation are necessary for a smooth experience.
There are several sources music producers turn to to get sounds for their productions, from studio recordings to sampling.
Getting the perfect sound for your production ensures that your music stands out.
We recommend recording sounds if you have the appropriate skills and equipment.
Alternatively, turning to a designer or a sound library is always an option.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find royalty-free samples for production?
There are many websites and platforms where you can find royalty-free samples for music production. Some popular choices include FreeSounds, Loopmasters, and even YouTube’s Audio Library. These sites offer a wide variety of royalty-free samples that can be used in your productions without worrying about copyright issues.
What are some websites offering high-quality music samples?
Several websites offer high-quality music samples and loops that can be used in your music productions. Some well-known platforms include Splice, Native Instruments, Cymatics, and Sample Magic. These sites provide professional-quality samples across various genres, enabling producers to find the perfect sounds for their projects.
Do professional music producers use sample packs?
Yes, many professional music producers use sample packs as a starting point or for inspiration in creating their music. Sample packs can save time by providing ready-made sounds and loops that can be easily incorporated into a project. Producers can then manipulate and adapt these samples to fit their desired sound and style.
Where do EDM artists source their sound samples?
EDM artists often source their sound samples from online platforms that specialize in electronic dance music production. Websites like Beatport Sounds, Prime Loops, and Vengeance Sound offer high-quality samples tailored to the requirements of EDM producers. Additionally, artists may create their own custom samples or collaborate with other producers to get unique sounds for their projects.
How can I get free drum samples for production?
To get free drum samples for production, you can explore websites like FreeSound, Bedroom Producers Blog, and DrumSamples.org. These sites offer a wide variety of drum samples and loops that can be used in your productions without any cost. It’s essential to check the licensing terms before using these samples in your projects, as some may require attribution or have other limitations.
What is the process of creating custom samples for music production?
The process of creating custom samples for music production involves recording, processing, and organizing sounds according to your project needs. This can include recording live instruments, field recordings, or even using synthesizers to generate unique sounds. Once the raw material is captured, it can be edited, processed, and arranged using digital audio workstations (DAWs) like Ableton, FL Studio, or Logic Pro. Custom samples may require more time and effort to create but can result in a more unique and personalized sound in your music productions.